Les Portes de Bordeaux, a 60/40 blend of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon available from Trader Joe’s for around $6, draws incredibly mixed reviews across the interwebs. I purchased it with some trepidation. The Las Vegas Review Journal called it, “another great little wine…. at a completely ridiculous price,” which was incredibly encouraging. On the other hand, the LA Weekly bashed it as, “dominated by a strong vegetal, green pepper flavor (often signifying under-ripened grapes) … [it] went straight to the cooking bin.” Ouch.
I figured $6 was worth the risk. Maybe it’s because of my unsophisticated palate, maybe it’s because I went in with lower expectations, but for whatever the reason, I was pleased with the Les Portes de Bordeaux. It was smooth, full, and tasting of red fruits with a hint of spice. It was quite nice paired with a pot roast (because I know the kids now a days are always looking for cheap wine to pair with pot roast).
Without going too far into vintages, I do want to mention that I sampled the 2009 Les Portes de Bordeaux. As we all know, 2009 was a fabulous vintage for Bordeaux. I have not yet had a chance to sample the 2010, though I have heard anecdotally that it is still a worthy option. Give it a try and let me know.